I was catching up with a friend recently over dinner and our conversation turned to books (as it inevitably does with a book lover). When my friend asked what I’d been reading lately, I shared a bit about a book I was reading at the time that had me thoroughly intrigued and itching to discuss with someone.
That book was Vox, which posits a world in which women come to be allotted only 100 words per day. After sketching out the premise, I was ready to dive into conversation mode, but my friend blurted out, “That sounds horrifying! Who wrote this garbage, a man?!” And in that moment, I was stunned. Nothing I could say after that would persuade her to even think twice about the book.
This line of conversation started me thinking about the different reactions I’ve seen to dystopian fiction, so I wanted to take some time today to talk about them. To be clear, I’m specifically talking about reactions to the book’s concept and not necessarily its execution or whether the book was actually good or entertaining or even enjoyable. I’m sure there are plenty of other ways that readers respond to these types of stories, but these are the reactions I’ve come across most.
Who wrote this garbage? It must have been a *insert your descriptive here*
I’ve seen this particular reaction most when the book in question has a premise in which a particular people group is belittled, minimized, or shamed in some way. More often than not, the person I’ve seen react like this belongs to that people group, so I have to wonder if it just hit too close to home?
This isn’t realistic
I’ve come across this reaction most with readers that are new to the genre and didn’t quite know what to expect. Since dystopia is the opposite of a utopia and therefore inherently flawed and problematic, it’s understandable why someone might think this if they didn’t know to expect it going in.
It’s a cautionary tale
This is probably the reaction I see most. I expect because reading about a worst case scenario that feels nearly plausible in our current society can make someone sit up and take notice of the parallels.
So, I’m curious. What are your thoughts on dystopian fiction and how do you react to it as a genre? And does your response change depending on the premise of a particular book?
As a seasonal reader, I tend to gravitate towards particular types of books as each season or holiday comes around. This year I was trying to decide on a romance to read leading up to Valentine’s Day but was having a difficult time narrowing down my list.
It took me some time to figure out why, but then it occurred to me that maybe it was because there are so many types of romance books out there. And since I enjoy reading books from a wide variety of genres, what I was really having a hard time picking was the type of romance I was in the mood to pick up. So I thought today would be a great opportunity to discuss some of the different types of romance novels that are out there. This is by no means a comprehensive list, but focuses on some of these types that tend to intrigue me the most.
Ready to see them?
I don’t know what it’s like where you live, but January by me got way too cold! So naturally, I spent plenty of time snuggled up with a blanket and a book. (Along with plenty of Netflix time as well, who am I kidding??) The majority of the books I read were middle of the road for me, with a few notable standouts. Overall it wasn’t a bad reading month but I’m hoping February is even better!
Ready to see the books I read and reviewed this month?
Continue reading “January Reading Wrap Up”
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been thinking about the reading goals I’d set for myself in 2018, what worked, what didn’t, and what I’d like to do differently in 2019. Last year, I read 117 books and my average rating was a 3.7. As I consider 3 average (not bad, not great, I liked it enough but wouldn’t pick up again), an average rating above that is great. Especially considering I read more books than I’ve read in the past few years prior. Continue reading “How much do you read?”
December always goes by so quickly! I get so excited for the Christmas season and then it passes by in the blink of an eye. But even with all the holiday celebrations, I managed to read quite a few books more than I expected!
I also wanted to take this opportunity to revisit my 2018 bookish goals. I had an idea in my head of how well I did with accomplishing these goals, but actually checking and writing this out helped me determine what really worked for me this year and how I want to adjust my goals/reading habits for 2019.
Click on through to see everything I reviewed, read, and wrote in December, along with a recap of my 2018 goals and how they fared…
Continue reading “December (& 2018) Reading Wrap Up”
How was everyone’s Christmas?! I had a blast celebrating with family and friends and have since been relishing having the week between Christmas and New Year’s off for the first time in over a decade! It feels like such a luxury to be able to sleep in after a busy holiday season and I am loving it.
My previous post shared my favorite backlist books I read this year and now it’s time to talk about my top ten new releases from 2018! While I was surprised at the wide range of genres in my favorite backlist books, this list does include a fair amount more of mysteries and thrillers. There is some variety here, though, and I’m really glad to have read each of these books.
Let’s see my picks now, shall we?
Continue reading “Top 10 New Releases I Read in 2018”
It’s that time of year to look back on the past twelve months of reading and decide on “best of” lists!
This year I decided to break it up into two lists: backlist books and books published in 2018. I had a few reasons for this decision:
1- I read more this year and therefore had more to choose from.
2- About half of the books I read this year were review copies and wanted to spread the love evenly.
3- What’s life without whimsy? (unapologetic Big Bang Theory reference)
My biggest surprise of this list is the wide variety of genres it includes. For someone who proclaims to favor mystery, thriller, and suspense, there’s a fair amount of fantasy and dystopian on this list – and even two nonfiction!
Ready to see my picks?
Continue reading “Top 10 Backlist Books I Read in 2018”
It’s that time of year when everyone starts thinking about New Year’s resolutions! Being a bookish person, I tend to hear many people say that one of their resolutions is to read more.
Obviously I think reading is a wonderful pursuit. But I would never tell someone how much they should read. That’s an entirely personal choice. Some might be happy to read one book a year while others won’t be content unless they read a hundred. (Or more!)
That all being said, I have some tips for you if you’ve made the choice that you’d like to read more in the upcoming year. Ready to see them?
I don’t know about you, but I’m something of a seasonal mood reader. Meaning, with every change of season I tend to feel a pull to read a certain type of book. It’s not always the same mood each time winter comes around, though. Some years I crave books in hot locations to feel the warmth. Some winters all I want to read is Harry Potter. Sometimes it’s more genre based. But this year, curling up with a book that takes place in a cold or wintry environment is particularly appealing. There’s just something about getting cozy with a blanket and a coffee while the chill is both outside and in my book that sounds just right this season.
Although each of these books features a chilly atmosphere, they couldn’t be more different. This list contains a variety of genres, from historical fiction to contemporary and gothic mystery to Nordic noir. So hopefully there’s something for you in the mix!
Ready to see my picks?
Continue reading “5 Books To Curl Up With This Winter”
November passed by in such a blur! My husband and I hosted both a Friendsgiving and Thanksgiving, which involved lots of prep work and cleaning, followed by even more cleaning. And as per our usual tradition, we decorated the house for Christmas in the weekend after Thanksgiving, which makes me a very happy camper!
It’s amazing that I found enough time amidst all the craziness to read nine books. Sometimes people ask me how I manage to read as much as I do and I honestly don’t even know. It’s like sleeping or eating. I don’t know how not to read!
Ready to see the books I read and reviewed this month?
Continue reading “November Reading Wrap Up”